As you already know, farming is one of the most important industries in the United States and in South Carolina. It plays a significant role in our country's economy and food supply. Farming is also one of the most dangerous working and living environments, especially for children.
Unfortunately, young children often view a farm as a playground and not as a worksite with potential dangers lurking about. Older children sometimes overestimate their capabilities both mentally and physically on the farm. Age plays an important role in determining whether a child has the knowledge or judgment to make decisions that keep them out of harm's way.
However, most accidents are preventable. In any case, it is the responsibility of parents and adult family members to set positive examples and to be good safety role models on the farm.
Please keep this in mind if children are present on your farm. It just may prevent injury to or save the life of someone you know and love.
The following tips can keep your children safer on the farm:
- Consider hiring a babysitter or taking your child to a daycare during work hours.
- Do not allow children to roam freely on the farm.
- Create a safe play area away from traffic and work areas.
- Assign age-appropriate farm chores after proper training has been given.
- Inspect your farm on a regular basis for hazards that can injure children wandering on your farm.
- Lock up chemicals and dispose of empty containers.
- Fence all farm ponds and manure pits.
- Equip all barns, farm shops, chemical storage areas and livestock pens with latches that can be locked or secured to keep children from entering.
- Supervise children according to their age.
- Before leaving equipment unattended make sure you turn it off, lower the hydraulics and remove the key.
- Do not allow children to play on tractors or any farm machinery.
- Make sure children wear helmets when riding horses.
- Teach children to treat animals with respect and approach them with caution, especially animals with newborns that are very protective of their young.
Create a Safe Play Area for Kids
A farm is naturally a dangerous place. Children are naturally curious. Together, they could be a risky pair. However, creating a safe play area on your farm can help. When determining a safe play area you should consider a location:
- Separate from traffic and work areas.
- With easily identifiable boundaries. Fences are ideal.
- That can be easily supervised.
- Free from dangerous debris.
- With enough room to run and explore.
- With safe and age appropriate play equipment.
We Believe in Safety on the Farm
Since 1955 Farm Bureau Insurance has served the needs of South Carolina farmers and their families. We are still committed to providing you with the customer service and quality farm insurance you need and deserve. We are proud to be a part of the local community and to support our South Carolina farmers.